What do we mean by “Just Better” ? Caring about the environment is not something new to Toyota. We have for many years set out solid foundations throughout our business to ensure that environmental compliance is at the cornerstone of all our activities. Discover in this section the environmental corporate structure, methodologies and certification that we use to ensure that we are “Just Better”.

Earth Charter, Environmental Policy and Action Plan

We are committed to protecting and improving the environment, so we need to be sure that all aspects of our business understand what is required of them and that we work together successfully to achieve our environmental goals. As well as our own environmental plans, we of course also have to make sure we comply with environmental laws and regulations and have the right measures in place to recognise and deal with all environmental risks.

The environmental management principles we apply across our business are developed from three sources: the Toyota Earth Charter, Environmental Policy and European Environmental Action Plan. These give us a framework that helps us continually improve our performance and progress towards our environmental goals. They also support the sharing of our experience and know-how with others, to increase environmental awareness and responsibility.

The Toyota Earth Charter expresses our central environmental philosophy and our commitment to helping build a sustainable, zero-emissions society.

Toyota Earth Charter

The Toyota Earth Charter is the foundation of all our environmental activities. It is a clear statement of the basic policy and action guidelines we follow to achieve sustainable development and effective environmental management. The charter is closely tied to the Toyota Guiding Principles, which define our corporate management philosophy. Specifically, it supports the second of these principles, which states that we will "dedicate our business to providing clean and safe products and to enhancing the quality of life everywhere through all of our activities".

The charter was drawn up in 1992 and subsequently revised in 2000. It sets out our basic policy, expressing how we want to help achieve a prosperous, zero-emissions society by developing environmental technologies, making continual improvements and working in cooperation with others. It also provides us with action guidelines, encouraging environmental awareness and responsibility and the sharing of knowledge and experience with others.

Basic policy

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We work in harmony with the environment and target zero emissions in every part of our business.
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We use every possible environmental technology to help the environment and economy to co-exist in harmony.
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These help us address environmental issues at global, national and regional level.
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We are building relationships with organisations and individuals to help preserve the environment.

Action guidelines

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We are taking on the challenge of zero emissions in every aspect of our business.
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We can gain environmental benefits from working together with our business partners.
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We actively support social activities to protect and improve the environment.
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We share information with others and work to build wider environmental awareness.

Our environmental policy is not just about what we do as a business, but also how we can help raise awareness and share great ideas with others.

Toyota Europe Environmental Policy

The European Environmental Policy is a formal expression of how we can go about achieving the aims we present in our Earth Charter. Drawn up in 2011, it is the foundation stone for the way we manage environmental matters throughout our business, in accordance with international and national standards and regulations. The policy supports our goal of giving environmental leadership, developing and implementing best practice within our industry and helping others to develop their own environmental thinking and action.

The policy includes our pledge to reduce emissions at every stage of a vehicle’s lifecycle, to cut waste and the amount of natural resources we use, and to make progress towards our goal of the ultimate eco-car. This is supported by our commitment to continuous improvement in environmental performance, energy usage and compliance with legal standards. We also seek to share our experience and encourage others to be aware of environmental issues and find effective ways of dealing with them.

Environmental pledge

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We are working to eliminate CO2 and other emissions in all our operations.
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Using the 3 Rs to helps us reduce waste and our use of energy and other resources.
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Our aim is to develop a car that has no negative impact on the environment.

Continuous improvement

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We consider the environmental issues and impact at every stage in a vehicle’s lifecycle.
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We ensure our businesses and products always meet environmental standards set down in law, worldwide.
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We design factories and production systems and methods that are environmentally responsible.

Open dialogue

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We work with business partners, our workforce and our customers to promote environmental awareness and best practice.
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We make the environment a prime consideration in our work and our relationships with others.
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We are always looking for new ways to encourage and develop environmental thinking and action.

It’s important to prepare for the future, so every five years we produce an Environmental Action Plan, which is regularly reviewed and updated.

The Environmental Action Plan concept

Our Environmental Action Plan sets out our environmental activities and goals for a five-year period.

As well as explaining what we will be doing in the short term, it also gives us a strategy for working towards our longer term goals. We produce a completely updated plan every five years, but its content is reviewed annually and revised where necessary. When we reach the end of each plan’s five-year span, we take the opportunity to look back on what we have achieved and identify areas where we need to improve or do more to reach our goals.

The latest Environmental Action Plan is the sixth we have produced. It was formulated in autumn 2015 and covers the period April 2016 – March 2020.

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*Greenhouse Gas

Our current Action Plan

The plan we are working with today carries forward the three priority areas we established in the previous plan: how we can contribute to creating a low-carbon society, how we can achieve a recycling-based society, and how we can do more to protect the environment and build a society that lives and works in harmony with nature. Our principal strategy remains the delivery of sustainable mobility by developing new and better eco-cars.

The adoption of the plan coincided with the announcement of the Toyota Environmental Challenge 2050, in which we declare bold environmental targets we aim to achieve by the middle of the century. Our efforts will be supported and strengthened by our current and future action plans.

We make every effort to make sure the way we manage, monitor and review our environmental performance and activities meets independent international standards.

Life Cycle Assessment (LCA)

Life Cycle Assessment is a well-known evaluation methodology that identifies and assesses the environmental impacts that are the result of a product’s entire lifecycle. Toyota’s Eco-Vehicle Assessment System (Eco-VAS) goes beyond this and is used by the Chief Engineer to evaluate the environmental impact of our vehicles right from resource extraction through to production, use and eventual recycling and disposal.

The System allows targets to be set from the initial stages that are regularly reviewed to ensure that they are being achieved. We have been carrying out Life Cycle Assessments of our vehicles since 1997. Every new generation of vehicle achieves a better environmental performance than its predecessor. We even have our methodology certified.
Discover the latest assessment for our Mirai fuel cell sedan.

ISO 14001 certified

The International Organisation for Standardisation provides a globally recognised certificate for businesses and organisations that meet its standards for environmental management. Called ISO 14001, it covers many different aspects, including the implementation of an environmental policy, the setting of objectives and targets, training and awareness and regular performance reviews.

We value ISO 14001 and the tools it provides, which support our commitment to continual improvement in our environmental performance.

More than 20 of our sites in Europe have received ISO 14001 certification, including factories, sales offices and logistics centres.

In addition, over a third of our retailer network has also received third party environmental certification.

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European Head Office & Technical Centre, 14 Parts Logistics, 6 Vehicle Logistics & LRVT Paris are certified ISO14001 by AVI. All NMSC/EMC are certified by other national certification bodies.
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